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Outagamie County seeks federal Medicaid dollars that were turned down by Governor

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UNDATED (WRN)   While Governor Walker plans to turn down federal funding for an expansion of state Medicaid programs, Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson is exploring the possibility of seeking those dollars directly.

Nelson recently returned from a trip to Washington D.C., where he met with US Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) on the issue. Nelson says the senator is pledging to provide resources and help to answer the question of if a county can bypass the state’s decision.However, State Medicaid Director Brett Davis says it’s not going to happen, because counties don’t have the legal authority to expand Medicad programs. Davis says he hopes Nelson is not “going to spend a lot of time exploring that option.”

Davis says he’s been meeting with county officials across the state to work on implementing the governor’s Medicaid plan, which would expand coverage to those living in poverty while pushing more people to use federal health exchanges. Davis says that effort is a “better use of all of our time.”

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